“Gun violence in this country is an epidemic, and an international embarrassment,” Biden declared on Thursday, in a speech announcing six executive orders aimed at tightening up the US’ gun laws. The orders were revealed by the White House a day earlier, and include a directive asking the Justice Department to crack down on untraceable ‘Ghost Guns’ and issue model “red flag” legislation, and a proposed restriction on shoulder braces for pistols.
Biden’s actions come in the aftermath of two prolific mass shootings in the US, in Boulder, Colorado, and Atlanta, Georgia last month. However, Biden’s orders do nothing to achieve his campaign promises to ban so-called “assault weapons” and high-capacity magazines, to hold gun manufacturers legally accountable for shooting deaths, and to close the ‘Charleston Loophole,’ which allows customers to buy firearms if their FBI background check is not completed within three days.
Such actions are the purview of Congress, and with Democrats holding the thinnest majority in the Senate, are unlikely to pass. Appealing to Republicans, Biden insisted that gun control “is not a partisan issue among the American people,” and urged the GOP to help pass two separate bills already passed by the House of Representatives. One bill would extend background checks, another would extend these checks to private sales.
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